Archives par mot-clé : Islands

New islands, happy feet: Study reveals island formation a key driver of penguin speciation

by Molecular Biology and Evolution (Oxford University Press), February 5, 201 in ScienceDaily


Ever since Darwin first set foot on the Galapagos, evolutionary biologists have long known that the geographic isolation of archipelogos has helped spur the formation of new species.

Now, an international research team led by Theresa Cole at the University of Otago, New Zealand, has found the same holds true for penguins. They have found the first compelling evidence that modern penguin diversity is driven by islands, despite spending the majority of their lives at sea.

“We propose that this diversification pulse was tied to the emergence of islands, which created new opportunities for isolation and speciation,” said Cole.

Over the last 5 million years, during the Miocene period, (particularly within the last 2 million years), island emergence in the Southern Hemisphere has driven several branches on the penguin evolutionary tree, and also drove the more recent influence of human-caused extinctions of two recently extinct penguin species from New Zealand’s Chatham Islands.

New Paper: 54% Of ‘Vulnerable’ SW Pacific Islands Studied Had Shorelines That EXPANDED From 2005-2015

by Kenneth Richard, July 26, 2018 in NoTricksZone


Despite a rapid local sea level rise rate nearly 3 times the global mean (1.8 mm/yr), 15 of 28 studied atoll islands in the southwest Pacific increased in shoreline area during 2005 to 2015 according to a new study (Hisabayashi et al., 2018). For the 3 islands that experienced extreme shoreline erosion – with one atoll island even “disappearing” – a Category 5 cyclone was identified as the most likely causal factor. 
Consequently, the authors conclude that “the dramatic impacts of climate change felt on coastlines and people across the Pacific are still anecdotal.

Swallowed Islands: Getting Sea Level Rise Out of Variability

by Kip Hansen, July 26, 2018 in WUWT


Author’s Note:

Journalists should do their job.  They should check the most pertinent facts for themselves — in this case:  Is sea level really rising 7-10 mm/yr in the Solomons?

Finding out that it hasn’t and isn’t makes a much more interesting story than “yet-another-alarmist-talking-point”.

Do note that while coral atolls are generally self-regenerating, sand spits/sand bars are not — they are at the mercy of the currents and waves.

Thanks for reading.

More Irrefutable Evidence of Small Island Stability In the Face of Climate Change

by Duvat et al.  2017, Global&Planetary Change in CO2Science


Writing as background for their study, Duvat et al. (2017) state that “it has commonly been considered that atoll reef islands would disappear under climate change, as a result of sea-level rise and induced accelerating shoreline erosion,” citing the works of Connell (2003), Dickinson (2009) and McAdam (2010). This perception is based on model predictions, which have been hyped all over the globe, especially among politicians and the media, some of whom demand reparations for small island States who they fear will be forced to abandon their islands within decades.

But how much faith should one place in such projections and concerns?

According to Duvat et al., not that much … (…)

Maldives Government: Where’s Our Climate Cash?

by Eric Worrall, April 26, 2018 in WUWT


Maldives Environment Minister Thoriq Ibrahim has warned that unless the Maldives gets its climate cash before 2020, the 1.5C global warming limit will be breached.

Read more: http://www.climatechangenews.com/2018/04/26/paris-agreement-starts-2020-will-late/

This call for climate cash echoes a similar demand from African nations a few weeks ago.

I’m not sure how the Maldives reconciles their climate concerns with all their fly-in tourism and their aggressive airport and resort building programmes, but no doubt some of that climate cash will help with the reconciliation if it ever arrives.